Perth builder underpaying his apprentice hammered by $5,000 penalty

WA Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety

The owner of Perth carpentry business Integrity Built has been fined $5,000 by the Industrial Magistrates Court for failing to comply with a compliance notice issued by an industrial inspector.

Anthony Baker was issued a compliance notice that required him to rectify more than $11,000 in underpayments to his apprentice carpenter. Despite a number of opportunities to resolve the matter,

Mr Baker failed to comply with the notice without a reasonable excuse.

As well as the $5,000 penalty, the court ordered Mr Baker to rectify the underpayments.

Executive Director of Private Sector Labour Relations Lorraine Field said compliance notices are designed to efficiently resolve complaints of underpayments of wages and conditions of employment.

“Failing to comply with a compliance notice is a serious matter,” she said.

“Although Mr Baker claimed financial difficulties as a reasonable excuse for underpaying his employee, the courts have long held that financial difficulty does not excuse an employer from their obligations to comply with workplace laws, whether the business is large or small.

“Mr Baker has only made a bad situation worse by his continuing refusal to comply with his employment obligations.”

Information on compliance notices is available at

/Public Release. View in full here.